Blacklist International secured a revenge win when it mattered, sending the defending champion, Echo, to the lower bracket with a 3-1 victory in the upper bracket semi-finals of the Mobile Legends Bang Bang Professional League (MPL) Philippines Season 12 playoffs at the EVM Convention Center in Quezon City on Thursday.
The Tier One-backed squad has now secured a top-three finish in five of the last six seasons and will face the winner of the AP.Bren-RSG Philippines match to compete for the first ticket to the M5 World Championship.
“Nagstep-up ulit sila. Para sakin, lima silang MVP sa series na ‘yun kasi maganda talaga ‘yung pinakita nila,” said Blacklist head coach Aniel “Master the Basics” Jiandani about his team’s performance against the Orcas.
Master the Basics added that familiarity also played a role in their conquest of the defending champs, whom they had not defeated since the grand finals of the MPL Philippines Season 10.
“Advantage din talaga kapag matagal niyo nang nakakalaban ‘yung isang team. Malalaman at malalaman mo kung ano ‘yung weakness nila. So, pareho sa nangyari sa amin. Since Season 10, natatalo na namin sila, hanggang dumating sa time na natatalo na kami kasi paulit-ulit na namin silang nakakalaban,” he added.
After exchanging wins in the first two games, Stephen “Sensui” Castillo took over in Game 3, displaying flexibility by choosing the Nolan pick, which led to an MVP performance with an 8-2-11 KDA.
He highlighted his dominant play with a 22nd backline attack during the lord dance, helping Kiel “Oheb” Soriano (Bruno) score a double kill and force a game-winning 4-0 wipe.
In Game 4, Blacklist punished Echo for overstaying in their base turret, with Oheb (Bruno) spearheading a triple kill in a 5-1 wipeout that enabled them to mount a one-way push to complete the comeback win and clinch the series.
Echo will fight for dear life in the lower bracket tomorrow, October 27, against the loser of the AP.Bren-RSG Philippines match.